Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Beowulf: Ready To Rock Your World

I don't think people are ready for what awaits them in the 3D theaters. If you see Beowulf in 2D you are doing yourself a huge disservice; it begs for the 3D presentation as it was meant to be.


Beowulf is shaping up to be the catalyst the studios were hoping for regarding the full fledged introduction of 3D to the masses. The reviews are coming in now fast and furious and they are overwhelmingly enthusiastic.

The actors are pumped up about the movie as well and trumpet the technology used by Zemeckis. Malkovich talks about being able to act as if he were in a play rather than traditional movie making (no issues with continuity, etc). Jolie spoke about "The Volume" - a device used to capture her performances; no makeup or props either. We are hearing similar stories from the set of Avatar where Sigourney Weaver marvels at James Cameron's technology prowess.

Yes. We are definitely in a paradigm shift of movie making and the first real taste of it comes from Beowulf. Sure it won't have the effects that Avatar will have in 2009, but you will be witnessing history here. Beowulf is the first movie ever to be released in both 2D and 3D - in fact IMAX counts as a third format! I intend on seeing it in IMAX the first time. And I will be running for the best seat 2/3's up the stadium in the center.

Rather than go on and on about the typical banter of pre-launch hype like cast interviews and trailers I am just going to let the movie speak for itself. Really - it is groundbreaking, so to drone on about typical hype is almost ridiculous. It is only being released on ~1000 3D screens or so (mainly using Real D technology - only ~80 are using Dolby 3D) but as this movie continues to carry well into Christmas and the new year (the demand will be sky high for the 3D version), theater operators will have renewed vigor to ramp up their 3D installations and you should actually see some very interesting spikes to the box office returns for Beowulf because of it.

Folks will see it in 2D of course (lots of theaters for this option), but if they do, they will be tempted, very tempted to go and buy a 3D ticket soon after. You will see more sales because of this phenomenon as well.

From all the sources I have read, you will see plenty of 3D tricks and devices being used in Beowulf to augment the 3D experience - it is the way that Zemeckis likes to shoot. Cameron on the other hand, treats the 3D craft much more like an art form than a "gimmick" - I am just excited to see both of these types of approaches in action. Surely the gimmicks would work best in a horror type movie to scare the living crap out of you. You can count of a few of these in Beowulf I hear. Don't be surprised if you see yourself lining up twice to see this movie. Fair warning.

I promised Anne @ Paramount that I would not post a review until November 16th - so look for a post bright and early on that day! I will however post my impressions about the movie - no spoilers or content however though. Just my testimonial...

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Jim Dorey
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